The Camino Frances

The Camino Frances

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Sleeping Arrangements on the Camino

Day 19 - Bercianos to Mansilla de las Mullas - 26 km

 This is one of the best albergues in terms of design: cubicles with 2 bunks, storage at the end of the beds, and walls between. Plus, see the ladders - they are easy to climb. This is in Roncesvalles.
Today we are in upper bunks, as we got the last beds. They are metal, which deters bedbugs, but the rungs of the ladder are hard on bare feet.
In several albergues, there are plywood panels between beds.

How about this one? We haven´t encountered 3 tier, but it likely is a matter of time.
Some of the lower bunks have no headroom to sit up, and sometimes there is no ladder and you need a chair to get up.
We slept in a room with only 2 bunks, so 4 people in Larrasoana. In Najera, there were 90 people in one room.
Last night in Bercianos, we slept on gym mats on the floor. They actually were very comfortable, but no space between mats.
There is always snoring, so if that bothers you, wear earplugs. I don´t, and I sleep through most of it, though if I wake at 5:30 am, I don´t usually get back to sleep.
Sometimes there are blankets, sometimes sheets, and usually pillows. I alway sleep in my sleeping bag, and sometimes I put my silk insert in and use it. And I cover my pillow with a silk scarf. During the day, I use it to hang my water bottle around my neck.
Dorms are usually not heated, and windows are usually open, so sometimes I need an extra layer of clothes.
I sleep in leggings and tomorrow´s merino t shirt.
I do not get up in the night. Remembering where you are and where the toilets are is too much of a challenge.
There have rarely been lineups for the limited number of showers and toilets, which indicates good planning.
You are not allowed to sleep 2 in a bunk. A couple we have met has tested this out. They opt for a more expensive experience occasionally.

These experiences are all in municipal or donativo or paroquial or low end private albergues. There are many more alternatives out there and perhaps I´ll get Pat to do a guest blog on her experiences in Casa Rurals and Hostals.

But as long as I have a soft surface to sleep on and a shower, I am happy.


  1. Happy Mother's Day Mom!
    Are you really so focused on your walk that the fact that it is Mother's Day has passed you by? You sound good, and weary. We had a relaxing day here - the weather is beautiful - finally. Cy made me breakfast in bed, and a beautiful painting. I thought of you lots today. We love you,

    1. Yes, I knew it was Mother´s Day, and I thought of you lots, and miss you all - will need hugs on my return. Breakfast in bed! Good work, Cy.

  2. Hi Darlene,

    Another update on Rabanal and the bed bug infestation, which is still not worse than last year, and the growing mystery surrounding the lack of tea bags at the Rabanal albergue. It seems the bed bugs have been pilfering the tea bags and using them as beds, communal yes, we won't go there, but beds.

    Mother's day pop quiz: was Mother's day invented by the famous card company: Hallmark, true or false.

    1. Well Mike, here is your answer.

  3. Replies
    1. Thanks for the good wishes, and Buen Camino to you - I see you are leaving soon!

  4. Hi Darlene: Wishing you the happiest of Mother's Days albeit a day late. I am just trying to subscribe to your blog in a way that I have the option to respond. I receive your posting via email which doesn't give me the option to reply. So hope I am successful in being able to send this response. Following you step-by-step and day-by-wonderful-day on your amazing Camino. Wishing that you are safe, healthy and happy in body mind and spirit as you make your way to Santiago and always. Judi

    1. thanks for the Mother´s Day wishes. <hope you had a wonderful one with your kids. We are safe and healthy and having an amazing time, especially today in Leon.